HÉLÈNE LAROUCHE (CA)
Text written by GHA
Canadian artist, Hélène Larouche’s sombre photogravures present vulnerability and displeasing questions not only about physical and mental health but about the limits of existence. In the photogravures’ monochrome world, human bodies function as material transforming into disturbing, strange creatures stiffened into unusual postures.
The texture of pale, wrinkled skin and the creatures’ uncanny nudity plays an essential role in creating the unsettling, dark atmosphere. The discomforting scenery is enhanced by the deliberate absence of any familiar face, expression, or a pair of eyes.
Nevertheless, the revealed vulnerability of the figures conveys a peacefulness, which transforms them into something seemingly beautiful and even seductive. The viewer gets easily mesmerised, almost hypnotised by their powerful, captivating presence.
The unconventional, almost non-human metamorphosis is even reflected in the given titles. They seem to lead and encourage the viewer to examine existence from a rarely seen perspective, through the peculiar depth of the depicted figures.